Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, the most gluttonous holiday in the history of the world.
If you look anywhere on the internet today, you’ll find article after article on how to avoid weight gain during the holiday season, what foods to eat, what foods not to eat, how to politely say no, and so on.
Here is the best article I’ve found. If you’re interested, make sure you download the free Survival Guide PDF at the end:
Now, instead of regurgitating this same information (that has been presented more completely elsewhere), I’m going to tell you to eat whatever the hell you want on Thanksgiving. You want to treat gravy like a beverage? Fine. Want to go up for seconds, thirds, and fourths on the turkey? Go right ahead. That case of Bud Light in your fridge isn’t going to drink itself either. Go right ahead and eat whatever you want, drink whatever you want, stay up too late (or pass out too early), and generally disregard your health tomorrow afternoon. You’re probably wondering how this will help you lose weight.
Here’s the truth: it isn’t. Well, at least not physiologically. You’re still filling your body up with tons of calories. However, you’re really not doing TOO much damage and you’re also taking care of something far more important:
Your sanity and your family.
You deserve a break every once and a while, and you really can’t destroy yourself in just one day (unless you decide to start hard-lining lard into your veins), so live a little. After all, we only get one chance on this planet, and if you’re not having fun with those you care most about, you’re just wasting your time.
Thanksgiving is a day to spend with your family and friends – the most important thing in life is to love and be loved. I want you to eat too much food with your parents, steal food off your niece’s plate over at the kid’s table, and drink beers with your buddies while watching the Lions lose another football game. Just pray for Calvin Johnson to score a buttload of points, because he’s on my fantasy football team and I need a big win this week.
Okay, so let’s say you take my advice (which you will) and eat until you pass out in a food-induced coma tomorrow, here are two things you can do to make sure you don’t completely derail your weight-loss efforts.
Tomorrow, I’ll be getting up bright and early to run in a 5k Thanksgiving race with my family. I don’t even WANT to run this race (not after my last experience in a 5k), but if my DAD and MOM are going to do it, I feel like I should too. After all, it’s because of my blog that they’re now suddenly inspired to run races and eat better, and I don’t want them to stop. So, why not burn a few hundred calories first thing in the morning, and then feel a little less terrible about stuffing my face later on? Get up early, take your dog for jog, take the kids for a walk, find a race in your town (which will probably benefit a really good cause), and get your blood pumping and calories burning.
If you don’t like running – put yourself through a quick body weight workout. Head down to your parents’ basement – unless you already live down there – and try the Nerd Fitness Challenge. Bang out some squats, decline push ups, pull ups or inverted bodyweight rows, and jumping jacks, and THEN go eat your turkey and mashed potatoes.
If you’re a skinny guy looking to bulk up, Thanksgiving is the greatest day of the year for you. Hit up the gym first thing in the morning, pump up those muscles, and THEN start stuffing your face. Pack on those pounds, son!
Eat Less After
Let’s assume you plan on jamming pounds of turducken down your throat while hanging with your family. Then, you’re going to drink yourself into oblivion while playing Modern Warfare 2 with your friends or watching football with your family. Needless to say, you’re going to create a huge calorie surplus in your system. Luckily, your metabolism is kind of a dumbass and can’t really discern what’s happening in the extreme short term. How do you use this to your advantage?
Take it easy the next few days! According to Katherine Tallmadge, dietician and spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association: “If you immediately go back to healthy eating, those calories you ate on Thanksgiving really can just average out.” On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, cram your system full of vegetables, fruits, and lean meats. Drink gallons of water, cut way back on the drinkable calories (juice, soda, booze), cut out the processed carbs, and put yourself in a calorie deficit – things will even themselves out. It’s a marathon, not a sprint, so after a day of overeating…GET RIGHT BACK ON THE TRAIN.
I realize there are pounds of left-overs in the fridge, and if you have parents like mine they’ll try to force-feed you every second of the day. However, here you can choose to be picky. Go with the veggies, the turkey is fine, stay away from the bad stuff.
My Thanksgiving Plans
What good would I be if I don’t practice what I preach? Tomorrow, I plan on eating gravy-smothered turkey like it’s my job, cramming my face full of everything else on the table, taking a nap on the couch while watching football, and then drinking some beers and playing pool in the basement with my dad and brother. After that, my old high school friends will probably end up coming over and the beers and pool will continue.
This sounds like a perfect day to me.
What’s your plan for tomorrow? Favorite thing to eat on Thanksgiving?
On a completely unrelated note, it looks like YouTube has added 1080p support, which means you can watch the Muppets sing Bohemian Rhapsody in true high definition. God bless YouTube: